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China left as observer as tensions rise on Korean Peninsula

25 April 2017

China is seriously concerned about nuclear threats after North Korea said they would test missiles regularly and warned of a pre-emptive nuclear strike against the United States in case they suspected an attack.

"We appreciate the challenging times in which the people of Japan live with increasing provocations from across the Sea of Japan", he said.

Russian Federation wanted to include language contained in a previous resolution stressing the need to achieve a solution through dialogue, council diplomats said. It has said it has developed a missile that can strike the mainland United States, but officials and experts believe it is some time away from mastering the necessary technology, including miniaturising a nuclear warhead. Yet at the urging of South Korea and for fear of angering China, the United States failed to use its full diplomatic and financial power to enforce those sanctions.

The Chinese Foreign Ministry Wednesday warned Pyongyang to exercise restraint on any actions that could heighten tension on the Korean Peninsula in response to Pyongyang's recent bellicose rhetoric.

But the Trump administration has made it clear this policy is now over, and has not ruled out military action. During his stay at the USS Ronald Reagan, now stationed in Japan, Pence vowed to "defeat any attack and meet any use of conventional or nuclear weapons with an overwhelming and effective American response". "This gentleman", though it might be easy to assume is the man now running North Korea, is someone Trump claims "outplayed" both Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, when they held the presidency.

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Mr Trump has been pressuring China, North Korea's benefactor, to help defuse the situation, but has also warned that the United States will settle the issue alone if other countries will not help.

Koh Yu-hwan, a North Korea expert at Seoul's Dongguk University, said that the way USA officials describe "maximum pressure and engagement" suggests that the Trump administration wants to ease Chinese fears about a collapse in North Korea, something that prevented Beijing from aggressively pressuring the North in the past.

The U.S. military's Pacific Command explained that the USS Carl Vinson strike group first had to complete a shorter-than-initially planned period of training with Australia. Trump said that will be "the end determination".

Pence told reporters near the Demilitarized Zone that President Donald Trump was hopeful China would use its "extraordinary levers" to pressure the North to abandon its weapons program, a day after the North's failed missile test launch.

But do we? Trump hasn't actually said what his strategy is for dealing with the Norks, and that's fine insofar as there's value in keeping them guessing. "The more tense things are, the more calm we need to be to find the opportunities and possibilities for dialogue".

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"The eyes of the world are on Beijing", he said.

Within China, there is talk about playing a key card to pressure North Korea - cutting off oil supplies to the Kim Jong-un regime.

That was interpreted by some as a slap at Kim's regime by Beijing.

This post was syndicated from BusinessDay: News you can trust.

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